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Why We Need A Shorter Working Week
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144 pages / September 14, 2021 / 9781788738682

Available for pre-order. This item will be available on September 14, 2021.

September 14, 2021 / 9781788738705


Why we should all work less! A radical and pragmatic manifesto for tackling the interconnected crises of contemporary capitalism: work, care and the environment

With the rise of automation and precarious forms of work, jobs are becoming increasingly polarised. While some are overworked, there are many more people forced into precarious and underpaid work, work that falls heavily on those most vulnerable in society. All of this while countries in the Global North are experiencing a crisis of care, where the disproportionately gendered labour of care is undervalued, and often unpaid. In this short book, Kyle Lewis and Will Stronge argue that one powerful and practical response to the worrying trend of job polarisation is the call for a shorter working week.

The time we spend at work is neither natural nor inevitable. Instead the amount of time we spend working is a political, cultural and economic question. Overtime will explain what a shorter waged working week means, as well as its history and its political implications. The authors argue that any long-term plan for a sustainable, just economy must involve a reduction in the time we spend working. Drawing on a range of political and economic thinkers, Lewis and Stronge argue that only by doing so can we create a more just and equal society, one that allows people the space and opportunity to develop an ethic based on citizen engagement and self-autonomy outside of market interaction.


Overtime is a stirring call to action in the fight for a shorter working week. Crucially, Lewis and Stronge remind us that no victories for workers have ever been won without struggle. Overtime is a critical text for socialists seeking to understand how the world of work has changed, and how to imagine a world in which our lives are no longer dominated by it.”

“The centuries old struggle by workers to free themselves from the dictatorship of work has emerged once more. Freedom from drudgery and the reduction in working hours have never been won without a fight. This book will prove invaluable in arming not only those who want to understand that struggle but also more importantly those who want to engage in it.”

“It’s no longer enough for the left to just shout jobs, jobs, jobs. Overtime not only shows why shorter working weeks need to be an integral part of a new deal for all workers, but also how it will be won.”

“In this terrific book, Will Stronge and Kyle Lewis present a remarkably clear and powerfully compelling case for shorter working hours as a path to greater sustainability, equality, and freedom.”

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